HT Bypass Vs Input selection Integrated Amp

Hi Folks, i am looking to supplement my HT receiver with network streamer +DAC. Today I have the marantz receiver (SR 5015) running preamp outputs to my 2  channel Parasound power amp, which power L/R. I also do however listen to a lot of stereo music and want to add a network streamer (Arylic or Node or Wim pro), and an outboard DAC (geshelli labs j2 or Topping E30). I have been looking into solutions like the Schit Sys which seems to be cheapest, quality means to switch between two analog inputs.

I'm also now learning of HT Bypass, which some integrated amps support. That said, why can't I just get a regular integrated amp and toggle between input 1 vs 2? What is the difference between one vs the other? Thank you!


You want a PREAMP with HT bypass.  Parasound makes several, among others.  :) Problem solved.

@erik_squires is absolutely correct unless you don’t want to add another box (and corresponding set of interconnects) to your system and/or you’re not thrilled with your current amp.  If you’re happy with your amp I’d just add a good stereo pre.

Thank you folks! Seems like a pre-amp is just what I need, as I do like my amp! 

Another thought is to sell the amp and get a good integrated amp - do I spend X for preamp or just spend x + 50% and get something like the M5Si from musical fidelity. Options galore in the world!! 

What Parasound amp do you have and what improvements would you like to achieve with a new pre or integrated amp?  Also, what speakers do you have and what cables/interconnects are you using, and what’s your budget and are you looking for new or used? All this will be very helpful in making targeted recommendations for your particular tastes and needs.

So here is my setup, and WHY I went down the path of an added source/DAC.

  • Speakers: Dali Oberon 7
  • Amps, I have two: Parasound 2125 V2 and Parasound A23. I like the A23 better, it details highs betters.
  • Interconnects: Audioquest Forrest

The Why: The Dali have wonderful vocals, have a warm, big sound, but aren’t that great at resolving finer detail, especially at lower volume. So I went down the path drive by curiosity as to what a better DAC can do - and lo and behold - A quality streamer/dac transformed the experience (Hifi Rose rs 250). Details are nice, sound stage has improved and im very happy.

So the objectives are three fold:

  1. integrate the streamer/DAC into the mix (pre amp or integrated)
  2. Consider whether a better integrated amp bring out more from the speakers, vs a preamp.
  3. add a record player, near term

Budget, im fine spend $1500, but would prefer to spend less, especially if gains are going to be minimal and the sound is good with just a preamp capable of HT bypass.